Ex-beau or­dered to re­pay $166,000 over in­vest­ments

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - NORTHWEST ARKANSAS - JOHN LYNCH

A 52- year- old Eureka Springs man, de­nounced as a con man by his ex-girl­friend, was or­dered Mon­day to pay the woman $166,000 to re­im­burse her for the money she says he swin­dled her out of over three months last year.

Pu­laski County Cir­cuit Judge Mackie Pierce awarded Nancy Jane Far­rell, 56, all that she asked for — $146,000 in losses plus $20,000 in puni­tive dam­ages to cover her ex­penses — af­ter Jef­fery Dwight Brown of­fered no ev­i­dence be­yond his tes­ti­mony to con­test her claims.

Pierce’s rul­ing in­cluded a de­ter­mi­na­tion Brown vi­o­lated the Arkansas Se­cu­ri­ties Act. That find­ing al­lows Far­rell’s at­tor­neys, Pat James and Kayla Ap­ple­gate, to pur­sue a claim against Brown for Far­rell’s le­gal ex­penses.

The judge ruled Brown was in de­fault of the law­suit Mon­day be­cause the de­fen­dant didn’t file a writ­ten re­sponse to dis­pute the al­le­ga­tions within the 30-day time limit es­tab­lished by the Arkansas Rules of Civil Pro­ce­dure.

Far­rell sued Brown in De­cem­ber, ac­cus­ing him of prey­ing on her frail health to bully her into giv­ing him $100,000 he was sup­posed to in­vest on her be­half in the Atoka Gold ex­plo­ration com­pany in Ne­vada and the K Lofts de­vel­op­ment project in down­town Lit­tle Rock.

The other $46,000 went to­ward other po­ten­tial in­vest­ments Brown claimed to be re­search­ing, the suit states. The money was paid be­tween Aug. 22 and Nov. 14.

When Far­rell tried to find out where the money went, she ei­ther couldn’t dis­cover what he used it for or found Brown in­vested it un­der his own name, ac­cord­ing to the law­suit.

Brown, who said he earns his liv­ing through his per­sonal in­vest­ments and as a nu­clear-en­gi­neer­ing con­sul­tant, de­nounced Far­rell’s ac­cu­sa­tions as “ab­so­lutely false.” He said he could doc­u­ment ev­ery­thing he’d done to prove his ac­tions were above­board.

Brown told the judge he was at a dis­ad­van­tage be­cause he didn’t have a lawyer and didn’t have the means to re­tain one.

“I’m not trained as an at­tor­ney,” he said, when told he wasn’t en­ti­tled to court-ap­pointed rep­re­sen­ta­tion. “I’m not pre­pared to rep­re­sent my­self.”

Brown told the judge he com­pletely lived up to the ar­range­ment he had with Far­rell to man­age her fi­nan­cial af­fairs, even af­ter their ro­man­tic re­la­tion­ship turned purely pro­fes­sional af­ter sev­eral months.

Brown said he was the vic­tim be­cause her ac­cu­sa­tions, cir­cu­lated through the network of con­tacts he’s de­vel­oped over 30 years, dam­aged his rep­u­ta­tion and cost him as much as $1 mil­lion in in­vest­ment op­por­tu­ni­ties.

Brown also dis­puted the amount Far­rell was ask­ing for, say­ing at least one $50,000 pay­ment she claimed went to him was ac­tu­ally sent to an in­vest­ment fund.

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